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Americas Newsroom

News/Business. Bill Hemmer, Martha MacCallum. News coverage and discussion. New.












Us 19, America 15, Iraq 11, Martha 11, Washington 10, Joe Biden 9, U.s. 8, California 7, Gregg 6, United States 5, Chicago 5, Texas 5, Obama Administration 4, Florida 4, Israel 4, Mexico 4, D.c. 4, Rahm Emanuel 4, Katrina 4, Bob 3,
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  FOX News    Americas Newsroom    News/Business. Bill Hemmer, Martha  
   MacCallum. News coverage and discussion. New.  

    August 23, 2010
    9:00 - 11:00am EDT  

>> dana: but we don't know what i'm going to wear tomorrow. >> steve: do you want suggestions? >> dana: no, i might have to go shopping. >> brian: perino. see you later. >>. >>. >> captioning performed by >> we are watching a tense hostage situation, and that is how we lead off "america's newsroom," a bus in downtown manila, s 5 tourists were held by a former police officer, we can tell you and we have reports, 3 hostages climbed through the window, and police have entered the bus, and, this was the horrific scene, moments ago. look at this: [gunfire]. martha: you'll see the video where the police are backing out of the bus and they start to see gun shots being fired, inside or outside of the bus, and they are trying to figure this out and
the gunman is rolando men doze zarks a 5 a-year-old -- mendoza, demanding his job after being fired for extortion years ago and leased nine hostages earlier including the women and children and we have the latest in the developing story, moments from now. martha: what a different scene this is, cheers of joy and relief this morning, news spreading that 33 miners who were caught in the cave, 18 days ago, in chile, we just found out they are all alive. but they are still trapped down there, and, good morning, everybody, busy news day, i'm martha maccallum. good to have you here on "america's newsroom." gregg: i'm gregg jarrett in for bill hemmer. rescuers drilled into the mine 7 times since the cave-in before finally getting, thankfully, the note, back, last night, saying, all the miners, not own alive, they are safe in an underground
shelter and now, turns out, it could take up to four agonizingly long months to get them out, steve harrigan has more live from miami and, steve, what is the scene like at the mine there? >> reporter: there are really two celebrations going on, one, on the surface, above that copper and goldmine, about 500 miles north of the chile capital of santiago and another celebration going on 2,000 feet beneath the surface where 33 miners have been holed up for than 17 days. no word from them at all until yesterday when a small hole drilled through the ground, 2000 feet reached them, about the size of a grapefruit and they were able to tie a camera down and go through the hole. they have video of those miners, as well. and, apparently they were using quite a bit of improvization to stay alive, the shelter had enough food and water for two days and they used a backhoe to get underground water and their mood appears to be strong, at
this point. martha: talk about this shelter, steve, where the miners are, 2,000 feet down and what kind of communications are they having between the rescuers and the miners at this point? >> reporter: they did make it safely to the shelter, all 33 of them and it took 8 tries to try and find the shelter with the drill bet and apparently there are complaints about the company and, a larger hole will have to be drilled, 27 inches in diameter and it could take up to four months and they'll pull them out one at a time and, right now they have been exchanging notes tried to the drill bit on the way up, one miner, 63 years old, said, no matter how long it takes, even months, we'll get out of here and we are all okay. and really the next test for them, might be psychological. staying down there, four months, waiting for the next hole to be drilled. martha: it could be christmas before they get them out. imagine what the rollercoaster of emotions, for all of the people involved. steve, thank you very much. steve harrigan reporting this morning. and, now, to iraq.
the last combat brigade may have left but the debate over iraq is far from over and the white house is set to do a full court press on the issue in a few hours, vice president joe biden will address the troop draw down at the vfw convention in indianapolis and the president is still on vacation, this week in martha's vineyard and when he gets back to washington, we understand, one of the first orders of business will be to address the nation, on the topic of iraq and these are pictures of him vacationing there, much more coming up on this issue of iraq, and what vice president joe biden will have to say coming up on "america's newsroom." gregg: the government warning that even more eggs may be recalled, the fda does not know exactly how the eggs or chickens were contaminated, adding that we could see more eggs pulled from the she was over the next several weeks. so far, there were 1300 reported salmonella poisonings linked to eggs, from two iowa farms and both farms share the very same suppliers of chickens, and feed,
and they also have ties to an iowa business, with a history of violating state and federal laws. martha: back to one of the biggest stories of the summer, there is a new and dangerous voice in the mosque debated. according to reports, opposition over plans to build an islamic center near ground zero is fueling jihadist fire. apparently there is a lot of new charity and anti-u.s. and terror linked web sites and listen to this: [people chanting]. martha: sound from a protest over the weekend. two heated protests, supporters and opponents going at a in downtown manhattan and eric sean joins us live in new york city for the latest on the mosque plans and the front page story in the "wall street journal," today, that echos the concerns about it, fueling jihadist fire? eric. eric: it seems the mosque supporters may be deciding what to do. the developer, the owner of soho
properties that owns one of the buildings they want to develop into the mosque told me they plan to go ahead despite the protests and the anger and j c. khan, the wife of the imam behind it, indicates perhaps they could be open to a potential alternative site but she says she has to talk to other stakeholders and a statement to fox news, previously, she said, quote: we have begun a dialogue with various constituents and listening to them, including 9/11 families and we want to bring peace and healing and so we are consulting with many people about what is the appropriate juncture to understand and do what is right and as you showed there were froesz yesterday, down next to ground zero, on both sides about 500 people were against the mosque, 150 were supporting it and those who wanted it called it a provocative insult and say is an avenue fronts to america and supporters say an example of religious tolerance and there was anger on both sides. >> we will not let the
principles of america compromise in the shadow of the world trade center site, we cannot tolerate a mosque. the memory of this hallowed ground, those people who gave their lives on 9/11, will not be forgotten. >> we want to make sure, like everyone else here, that, the muslim communities in the city, has a right and the freedoms that everyone has, and, they are not any different. >> reporter: meanwhile the leader of the mosque movement of the community center, the aym t was on a state department trip and he says all of the news shows they are overall having success and it will improve relations in the u.s. martha: thank you very much, eric, more coming up later in the hour. gregg: brace yourself for this one, credit card rates going to the highest levels in almost a
decade, the average rate now at 14.7%, ironically, the hikes are being driven by new rules going into effect this week that are actually supposed to protect you. stuart varney is the anchor of varney and company on the network network. it is beyond irony and, it is outrageous. what do you think. >> reporter: the law of unintended consequences, perhaps, you pass the credit card accountability and disclosure act to protect consumers and what happens? the rate you pay on your credit cards goes up. as you said, gregg, 14.7%, now, and it was only 13.1% a year ago. why is it happening? well, credit card companies can no longer jack up the rate that you pay willie-nilly. they have to give you advance warning, 45 days that it will go up and result, everybody's rate goes up right from the get-go, because they have to cover heavy delinquencies and have to spread the risk around, for poorly based borrowers and rates go up for everybody and the result.
martha: if you carry a balance you pay more on it now than you were a year ago, and, if you want a new card, or extra credit, on your existing card, if you raise any kind of red flag, you will not get that extra credit or the new card, so, the result of this new rule is to restrict credit to raise the price of credit, when you are supposed to be protecting consumers. gregg: the highest in a decade, and, yet, it is almost the lowest in terms of what, the overnight fed funds rate, that -- i mean, almost zero, right? >> compared to a mortgage rate. that is nor rate that many, many people pay, and, the currents mortgage rate is the lowest ever. 4.42%, i think it is. i cannot remember it being below 4.5% ever but it is now, and, coupled with the highest rate on credit cards in nine years and you have yourself a real conundrum. gregg: 15-year -- i checked into
it, a 15-year mortgage rate is now 3.75. >> that's right, yes. gregg: i would have never thought it would happen. >> when i came to america and got my first house, 12.5% on a 30-year fixed, i thought myself lucky. gregg: 1980s, 18%. >> i'm talking late 70s. gregg: we'll compare birthdays, tanks, thanks, stuart varney. martha: and violence across the border, what had folks in one border town literally running tor cover. bill: howard dean sounding off on the president's inner circle. saying they are way out of future with americans and we'll tell you about that. martha: and, they said they were dropping like flies, doctors trying to figure out what sent 18 high school football players on the same team to the hospital.
>> one day, it started swelling up. >> i was shocked this is happening to us. we were dropping like flies from practice. with so many to choose from 's hard to see the difference.
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gregg: we have been following the last several minutes breaking news out of manilla, frightening situation, 15 tourists held hostage inside a burks a disgruntled, angry former police officer opening fire on some of them and now we have learned it is over, and global radio news is on the telephone from manilla, at the police command center. and what can you tell us? >> caller: 20 minutes ago the 12-hour hostage situation, by rolando mendoza, a senior police officer from the manilla police is over, when a sniper shot him from across where he was inside the tourist bus. now, earlier at around 9:00 a.m., manilla time, the captain
mendoza tried to him a ride on a tourist bus from a tourist destination not far from where it happened and a few kilometers from where he board understand the bus he declared the hijack and the swaying has been running, about -- more than 12 hours and, there were allegations that it happened earlier on and it was opened the hostage-taker would finally ends the situation, by some offers of negotiations. gregg: dean bernardo, with the latest and we have no word on any other deaths or casualties, beyond the -- other deaths beyond the terrorist himself, a former police officer holding those people hostage. martha: iran ramping up tensions, unveiling their first domestically built unmanned bomber, a fully operational jet that carries long range missiles
and iranian president mahmoud ahmadinejad claims the drones' main message is both that it's an ambassador of death, and, a siphon peace and friendship. -- a sign of peace and friendship, and, former ambassador to the united states, joins us now, good morning. >> good morning, martha. martha: what is your reaction to the unveiling of the missile. >> it is part of a process in which the iranian regime called for israel's destruction, to be wiped off the map and this is the same regime that is sponsoring the hezbollah terrorists in lebanon who fired thousands of rockets at israeli citizens and the same iranian regime that is sponsoring hamas and gaza, and hamas also fired thousands of rockets at israeli citizens, so mahmoud ahmadinejad unveiling an ambassador of death is not news to us, it is a continuation of an old and very frightening story. martha: so, while this is happening, we have also had these, you know, releases from the white house, that they want
to restart the peace talks and the nuclear specialists at the white house, on friday, saying, they are at least a year away and he says the year is a long time and a lot of people might dispute that from getting nuclear weapons capabilities from iran. what do you make of that back and forth. >> the back and forth is we believe peace will stand a greater chance of being accomplished if iran does not have nuclear capabilities, if they that have nuclear weapons, they can back hezbollah and stop a peace process at any time and can start a war, we know iran is capable of starting wars when it wants to by giving an instruction to one of the terrorist organizations and they did it in 2006 in lebanon and 2008 in gaza and there is a direct connection in that way, certainly. we believe that the iranian nuclear threat is not just a threat to the peace process and not just a nuclear, not a threat to israel but the entire middle east and indeed to the entire world, martha.
the iranians have the rockets, the drones now, ambassadors of death and imagine what kind of payload those ambassadors will be carrying. martha: so, ambassador, explain to me, then, what your reaction is, to news of the quartet, renewing peace talks on september 2nd, in washington, d.c., that will be the president's first order of business, basically when he gets back to washington. will israel come to the table to talk peace, with mahmoud abbas? >> well, we have been calling for direct negotiations for well over a year-and-a-half, martha and we greatly welcome the event, and, yes, of course we will be at the table and we'll be at the table as secretary of state clinton said without pre-conditions and we're ready to negotiate on all of the core issues and to reach swiftly, we hope, and historic peace with the palestinians, and indeed with all people in the middle east. martha: thank you very much, michael orrin, israeli ambassador to the united states and you'll hear a lot about this in the coming days as we continue to cover this, we wants
to hear from you as well, log onto our web page,"america's newsroom" and take our poll and today we are asking, do you think and this has been discussed, israel would consider taking out these nuclear sites, from iran? we want to get your reaction to this issue, a lot of talk about this last week and now the talk will return to the table and we'll see what happens, please weigh in. gregg: dropping like flies on the football field, wait until you hear the bizarre story of a football team's mysterious sickness.
martha: it's usually the firemen who do the rescuing but in rhode island a few firefighters needed a helping hand themselves. check this out. their big red truck -- whoa!
seriously stuck in the mud in a big black hole and officials said they were heading back to the fire house and drove straight ton a sirinto a sinkho took two hours to get them out of there and it was apparently caused by recent road construction, and they got a little help from their friends and were on their merry way. gregg: mysterious disease hitting 18 members of a high school football team, in mcminnville, oregon. sending them all to the hospital, ten of them still there. the disease causes muscle damage and one of the players saying it hit him out of the blue. take a listen. >> one day my arm started hurting and then started swelling up and, at the end of practice... >> i had to go to the hospital. gregg: doctors and school officials are trying to pinpoint how many players came down with the disease, joining me, dr. marc siegel, a member of our fox news a team, you are my
favorite doc and my favorite fake doc is gregory house, this is a case for dr. house. >> right out of a house episode and he'd end up with the most mysterious, bizzare solution, this is is a muscle fiber break down and these things rupture and what caused it, most likely, intense heat and these guys were working out, 100°. gregg: 115°. >> the muscle is like a motor and if you put it under untense pressure, the cellular structure explodes, heat and intense exercise and if they took a supplement, creatine. gregg: i'm thinking creatine, the normal range for ck is 25 to 232 units per liter and some students had 42,000 units per liter in their body, might they been taking a powdery substance. >> technical a condition known
as rabdomyalisis and alcohol can cause it if they exercised and drank or a stimulant and you know what else would cause it, house would love this. it could be a virus, something like legionnaire's, and caused -- combined with the exercise and we'll probably find out it is creatine. gregg: look, some people suggested and apparently have been asked about steroids. steroid use. could there be a connection to that at all? i'm not suggesting there is, but they were asked about that. >> my opinion is, no. you know why? into the they can't be taking steroids but they hit people differently and you wouldn't see 19 affected at once and it is usually over time steroids, and the acute problem means heat, dehydration and tons of exercise. gregg: we have done so many stories, especially during the summertime, football practice,
known of players often collapsing and some died and i never heard of this many players, 19, all taken to the hospital, with -- >> life-threatening, and you may need intravenous fluids, and, that is a good lesson for coaches and players, you should not do this kind of exercise. keep them out of the heat, right, don't send them over 100 degrees to sweat it out and -- >> absolutely, ridiculous. martha: i agree. thanks, doctor, good to have you. coming up an international border or a war zone? >> i looked out of my house and heard a bunch of gun shots and saw a bunch of troops, walking outside and running with the rifles, and i saw gun shots coming from up in the hills. martha: wow. details on this huge gun fight, that erupted on the mexico side, that sent bullets flying into the united states. gregg: and california, it may be cash strapped right now, but
that is not stopping them from building the most expensive school in the country. we'll tell you just how much this is costing taxpayers. martha: you will not believe it and he's one of the most out spoken voices in the democratic party, why he says the people who work in the white house are out of touch with america. we want to know what you think, do you agree? go to fox news's web site,"america's newsroom," send me your comments, or twitter me, i'll be looking for those on the break. we'll be right back. ♪
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gregg: welcome back, here are the stories making headlines this hour, a tense hostage situation in the phillipines is over, a police who took over a tourist bus is dead taken out by a single sniper shot. >> a man hunt underway for a man accused of killing three people in washington state, the suspect, 31-year-old allen booth, may have been trying to get drug money, he is considered arm and dangerous. a nationwide warrant issued for his arrest. forecasters are watching tropical storm danielle, that storm still way out in the atlantic, sustained winds of 60 miles per hour, danielle is not expected to hit the united states. martha: very much back on the scene and one of the most outspoken democratic voices out there today, and
he says the people in the president's inner circle, his most trusted advisers, are out of touch with americans, former democratic chairman and presidential candidate howard dean. listen to what he had to say. >> people around the president have really misjudged what goes on elsewhere in the country other than washington, d.c. i don't think this is true of the president but i do think his people, his political people, need to spend time outside washington for a while. martha: bock beckel is a fox news contributor and ando andrea santoras is a fox news contributor and are well matched as -- well-matched as wells. what do you think about howard dean saying this before the democratic mid terms. >> this is a battle between dean and rahm emanuel. when he was chairman of the democratic national committee and rahm emanuel was chairman of the
democratic committee they had a maj ever disagreement and that never heeled. dean, when it came to the health care reform bill, they didn't get that, he didn't like that and he's been biting at obama's heels for some time. the timing is not good, frankly. right now we have enough problem with republicanning attacking -- attacking us, we don't need the former chainman doing this. martha: the assault is that he's not aggressive enough. >> it's his position. it's ironic that the right says he's a socialist and the left says that he's too much of a centrist. it's a tough one to win. frankly, that's the only bad place to be politically if he can get himself situated there. having howard dean attack you, you've got to be careful, it has to do with turnout and turnout is important to us. martha: you touched on something i think is bg and it was brought up in a couple of different places, ndra -- ndra. it sort of goes to this division thing, this morning, writers talking about the fact that there is
no much thing as obamaism and the president has de reflect dollars an opportunity to be a democratic version of ronald reagan, that his vision and bringing all his ideas together is not happening in a cohesive way that americans can identify with. >> that's a great point. i mean, what is the obama agenda? i beg the question daily. now that he's passed health care reform, he's all over the map, he doesn't seem to be able to articulate a cogent message except for the 235bg9 that -- fact that george wish is to blame in going after republicans and i think howard dean made a strong point, the devment m on dem . signals trouble but it signals trouble because there's no direction at the white house and the amusing thing about howard dean, though, he talks about obama -- the need for obama to be more left. martha, that is way more out of touch. i mean, going after obama and ag they're not in touch with the american people and they need to be more left? that's the problem. i think that's why you're seeing a real backfire.
martha: i think howard dean is saying he feels like he's left his principles that he was elected on. this touches on the same thing, bob, it goes back to the team at the white house, are they fail to go help him communicate a message resonating with americans and do you think they should make changes in the west wing? >> first off, i don't think the message is clear because there are so many different things to be done. when andrea says about what's been accomplished here, i mean, you've got everything from equal pay to women to getting the economy back on track. >> getting the economy back on track? when is that happening, bob? when did democrats do that? here's the problem. here's the problem. you know, you quickly forget how things were a year and a half ago. things have come a long way. leaving that aside, it is not a clear message because there are so many different things he has to do because the problems are manifest, including two wars, so do they need have a clear message going into the fall, i think the message is pretty simple, which is if
you want to have this thing turned over to the republicans, the party with no idea, no thoughts, no coherent messages of their own, go ahead. martha: i want to squeeze in one mini topic and it goes to the topic bob was -- point bob was making, the president has gone off koch industries, and i want to play this sound bite by the president and get your thoughts on it and who's behind it. >> right now, all around this country, there are groups with harmless sounding names like americans for prosperity, who are running millions of dollars of ads against democratic candidates, all across the country, and they don't have to say who exactly the americans for prosperity are. martha: well, there's a big piece on this in the new yorker magazine, he's going after koch industries, the two gentlemen behind americans for prosperity.
bob, your reaction, then andrea's reaction, is this a start way -- smart way for the president to go? >> the person behind this is david koch, the largest private employer in the cup, big into oil, this guy has been against the climate control people, everything progressive democrats have stood for, i'm glad he's being drawn out and he ought to have guts to put his -- his name on it as opposed to a committee. >> nobody understand what is this means, for a president to comment on t. el-- really t. elevates this group, this is something a president should not be commenting on and i think it shows he doesn't understand the job of the presidency. >> i understand dave koch. he's somebody we ought to expose. martha: george soros on the other side -- >> well,sy exposed, that's the dis. we go after the soroses of the world but not david koch. he's a right wing money
machine. >> you should go after him but the president shouldn't. >> oh, thank you guys! martha: bob and andrea, good to have you with us. we want to know what you think, go to"america's newsroom", send me a tweet or e-mail. chris says i agree with howard dean that the white house is completely out of touch with the average american, not only the white house, but 99 percent of our government, and then we have lauren writing n. she says of course howard dean is going to say the obama administration is out of touch, he wants to be reelected. well, maybe even elected for the first time, howard dean, right? thank you guys. dwrieg gregg bugets are -- greg: bullets are flying, people in el paso on edge after witness ago gun fight just across the border in juarez, mexico, the incident leaving the gunman dead, two mexican police officers wounded, federal agents forced to shut down a main street to protect the public from stray bullets. one witness describing the scene: >> i looked out of my house and i heard a bunch of
gunshots, i saw a bunch of police running around and a bunch of troops walking on foot and running with rifles, and i saw gunshots coming from up in the hills. >> border patrol. >> they said you should probably get inside. it's shocking. nobody can do anything about it. gregg: police say a bullet hit a building at the university of texas. i talked to a guy yesterday that said city hall in el paso was hit with a bullet during all of this. no injuries reported on the american side. martha: texas governor rick perry saying what happened in el paso is a strong sign that things are, quote, going from bad to worse on the border. the governor making remarks at a national guard association conference in austin. perry is making a new push to beef up border security, telling members of the national guard they are critical in the fight against violence. >> fact is, i don't need a washington person to tell me car bombs are going off
across the arrive of el paso or cartels who are recruiting young teenidge -- teenage hit men in texas, or the bullet that is are flying across the border, hitting the campus at the university of texas-brownsville, or the city hall in el paso that are pretty strong signs that things are going from bad to worse. martha: governor perry also repeated his call for an extra thousand soldiers at the texas border. and controversy brewing in arizona over a flag that represents the tea party movement. why a community is saying take it down and how the homeowner is fighting to keep it flying. gregg: plus take a look at this school in california, raising eyebrows all over the country. the sticker shock in the golden state. coming up next.
gregg: some are calling it the tage mahal of schools. you can decide for yourself. there it is, the new robert f. kennedy community school is opening in los angeles next month, complete are art muruals and manicured park, state of the art swimming pool, lots of marble, and the cost? $578 million, that's going to be the most expensive public school in the country. built in a school district facing $640 million budget shortfall, in a state facing a $19 billion decifit. try doing the math on that one. lee hawkins is a reporter for the "wall street journal". i mean, if you look up irresponsibility in the dictionary, it should have the knuckle heads who came
up with the idea of spending this kind of money on a public school. >> that's really the problem in california. you've heard a lot about the budget crisis, but not a lot about the public relations crisis in california. that's being caused by all of these examples of the egregious spending. basically, the city manager in bell, california, making a salary of almost a million dollars, who will retire as a multi millionaire, and now a $600 million school, and that's really a problem because the budget process really requires one to make tradeoffs. everyone needs to make a tradeoff. but who wants to make tradeoffs when you have a vivid example of a $600 million school? that's a real problem for governor schwarzenegger now. gregg: this is a classic example of overpending, prove li gat spend, isn't it? >> yes, it is, and the real problem, when you see this -- and right now, we're talking about it in the media and the democrats are asking for a 1 percent tax increase while this is out
there. gregg: correct. >> so what governor schwarzenegger wants to do is cut spending by $12 billion. gregg: part of the problem is the dysfunction of california governing. you've got to have a two-thirds majority to get anything passed in the legislature in sacramento, and i mean, that government is the -- it is different. >> isn't it? two-thirds supermajority is something that's been contested over time. gregg: if you think -- >> if you think about 30 years a. was there the gann amendment and what that did, it controlled spending to population growth and inflation. they were able to grow the economy by about 120 percent because of this amendment. they probably need to bring something like that back. grieg gregg and this isn't just one bad decision. there's another school in los angeles they just built, $377 million, another one, $232 million. now, i grew up attending
public schools, k, you know, 12th grade in los angeles, and my school wasn't much to look at back then. >> this makes me want to go back to high school, actually, because this is such a -- this is like a landmark, a frank lloyd wright, this landmark that's so beautiful. gregg: yeah, one of the members of the california board of education said new buildings are nice but when they're run by the same people who have given us a 50 percent dropout rate, parents aren't buying it. good point. lee hawkins, "wall street journal" reporter, thank you very much, good to see you. martha. martha: well, they were tourists held at gunpoint on a public bus. the tense moments after shots are fired and the police started to move in. who may have escaped alive, next. gregg: and a major effort to restore life undersea and livelihoods on the ground. we're going to show you the big project underway. look at those pretty pictures.
gregg an gregg: andrew mcdonnell says his homeowner association is slapping him with a fine for refusing to take down a flag that says don't tread on me. neighbors throwing support behind mcdonnell saying it's his first amendment right. according to law they can display the u.s., state and military flag outdoors. martha: federal -- federal stimulus money from uncle sam going to work in the awares off a florida coast, restoreing corral reefs. it could also bring much
needed jobs to the area. phil keating is live in the miami bureau. tell us about the the underwater corral areas. they're almost like farms. >> they truly are, martha, they are like you would see in a tomato familiar or some other vegetable and they grow stag horn and elk horn corral which are the only two species listed on the ang dangered species. they were punished and decimated in large population numbers in the 1980s and when you -- what you have are rows of cinder block and pipe, rows attached to poles, all growing bits of corral which grow pretty much 1 millimeter a day and these two population, elk and stag horn are recovering from bacterial disease, global warming, and stress. >> i made my living off the reefs for most of my life and i've watched it die and i've come up with solutions to fix it, i think. so now it's like my passion
to bring it back to what it was when i started doing this. >> the florida keys have the only living coral reef in the united states and they're incredibly povment. once you bet the reefs built with the coral, you'll atrack the little fish that attract the bigger fish and that sustains the fisheries and the ag system of the ocean. martha: it's fascinating, phil. how 23ebg9ive -- effective is it in transplanting coral to rebuild the dead reef, is it working? >> it's working quite effectively, the rebuilt reefs are quite robust. the video is a rebuilt reef that has grown from basically a barren ground reef two years ago to now you can see elk horn and stag horn coral, brain corral, all kind of life down there. 25 percent of all marine life depends on these coral reefs and the coral maturation foundation is
working with the nature conservancy and the overall $3.4 million obama stimulus plan that is created about 50 jobs and they have the farms, these nurseries over the whole area going from the area west of key west and there are nurseries like you see here from key west, to marathon, key largo, broward county and two in the u.s. virgin in saint coix and saint thomas. a lot of volunteers are here so a lot of people that scuba dive, they met a woman from montreal to go scuba diving an she figured why not do good for the coral reefs while i'm there and she was a volunteer. martha: fascinating. phil keating, reporting from florida. gregg: we are now getting new details into the newsroom on the fate of the hostages in the situation in manila, breaking news right at the top of the hour. and the combat mission is ending, but the war may
not be over. why the white house is doing a full-court press on iraq, coming up next. they put a white check on the top of every box to let people know that their cereals have healthy whole grain, and they're the right choice... (announcer) general mills make getting whole grain an easy choice. just look for the white check. hi, may i help you? yes, i hear progressive has lots of discounts on car insurance. can i get in on that? are you a safe driver? yes. discount! do you own a home? yes. scount! are you going to buy online? yes! discount! isn't gettg discounts great? yes! there's no discount for agreeing with me
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ask your doctor about boniva today. (announcer) to get one month free, plus more tips and recipes, visit or call 1-800-4-boniva. gregg: a "fox news alert," a deadly find hostage situation in the philippines. [gunfire]. gregg: frightening and fatal gunfire, 6 of the 15 hostages on board the manilla tour bus were killed along with the gunman, a former policeman fired, holding a busload of hong kong tourists hostage, and armed with an m-16 rifle demanding he be reinstated on the police force. well, police surround the bus and stormed and killed the gunman and the survival tourists quickly filed they've bus in a torrential downpour and we'll
have more on what exactly happened aboard the bus as we get it. martha: back at home we are exactly one hour away from a pivotal war update from the vice president, joe biden set to speak from indianapolis, at the top of the hour and the president's point man on military operations, expected to predict an end to the political problems in iraq, while touting the draw down of american troops across the region and that is how we get started on a very busy monday morning, a brand new hour of "america's newsroom," i'm martha maccallum. gregg: i'm gregg jarrett in for bill hemmer. the iraqi government, it is fair to say, appears to be in shambles at the moment. riddled with infighting and corruption. martha: the next question, are they failing to stand up, as they strong and stable government, as the u.s. forces start to stand down? major garrett is traveling with the president, live now for us from martha's vineyard and what this is news? what do we -- what is the news
and what do we expect to hear on the major speech, major. >> reporter: welcome to a gusty and rainy vineyard-haven part of martha's vineyard and the vice president will say a couple of things that will grab headlines, one, he'll predict the factions in the iraqi political situation will come together and form a unified government, quote-unquote, soon. and, the other bit of news there, is that the vice president will not predict who will come out on top nor will he predict what "soon" means, sooner rather than later and the only reason is most americans would want to pay attention to vice president joe biden on this particular matter dealing with iraq, since he is president obama's appointed point person to deal with all of the various factions in iraq and, the kurds and shias and sunnis and former prime minister nouriel maliki and iyad allawi are the ones that got the most votes in the march 7th election and close finish and have been unable to resolve the political
differences and you talk to senior administration officials and their point of view on this protracted political limbo is, well at least they are not bombing each other, they are not fighting in the streets and they are trying to work out, the political differences amicably and are taking a long time doing it. martha: i can tell it is very windy where major is and we often talk to him when he's about to be blown off of a location! if you can, mainly, let me ask you one more, if it holds up there. obviously, the president made -- made a strong point about pulling out of iraq as part of the presidential campaign and now with the recent wave of violence, are they concerned about the draw down in conjunction with the violence. >> reporter: the violence of course is a concern, at least 59 potential army recruits, the iraqi army, were killed last week lining up to sign up for the armed service in iraq. and, the administration looks at the level of violence, it is way, way down, and significantly down, over where it was a year-and-a-half ago and partly
because of the ses of the surge, but, also, partly because of the success of the iraqi military and police force, to step in and fill the breach and, as u.s. combat forces have been pulling back, for a long time now. one thing that the administration will say today is, look, it's not as if 90,000 combat forces or pulling out of iraq in august, they were pulling back from the fray, consistently, for the last 9 to 12 months and, the iraqis have been stepping up. and, so, yes, the violences is of concern, and, they believe as long as the political limbo exists there will be that effort, to get the sectarian sides against one another and using violence as a potential motivating mechanism but, basically the violence is down, and they do believe, it was in the administration circles the political differences will be resolved, somewhat soon, and in the main, peacefully, martha. martha: that would be an important development, major garrett on a gusty martha's vineyard day, get coverage and shelter there, major, talk to
you later. gregg: good sailing day, though. martha: indeed! gregg: we wanted to hear what you think, go to vote in our, we admit, unscientific poll, the question: do you think we won the war in iraq? on and check out how other viewers are voting. martha: boy, what a big busy sunday it was here in new york, there were dueling rallies as opponents and supporters of the mosque near ground zero clashed in lower manhattan. a wild weekend, near the world trade center sighted, rain-soaked streets they had to deal with there, with act virsz fr -- activists from both sides of this extremely heated debate and, some say no way, not here as the plans move forward and others say opposition to the center is based on bigotry. >> why put it so close if you want to bring people together? put it away from it so there is no pictures to show that the mosque is right where our children died. >> we are trying to praise our
lord and nothing more and nothing less. >> this is their way of saying, we have the power to be anywhere we want even on the graveyard of america. >> people are like i don't want a mosque built next -- in my neighborhood. what is that about? it's not about ground zero, it is about something else. martha: all right, reports say the opposition to the mosque is now being used for terror recruiting on-line. that is in a "wall street journal" story today. former new york governor george pataki is set to hold a news conference on another house of worship, the drive to rebuild a tiny church that was destroyed on september 11th, the greek church, st. nicholas which was the only church as i said, that was taken down on that horrible day and the governor will have more on that, later. gregg: now to mexico, the violence getting even more brutal there, police discovering four decapitated bodies hanging from a bridge. it happened in the a town of cuernavaca, a getaway spot for people in mexico city and the attorney general's office said a
local drug kingpin claims responsibility and they say also it is likely a revenge killing against a rival gang. martha: on the other side, on the side of this border the internationally tackled the immigration issue, with take hard line approach to workplace enforcement. cracking down on employers who hire illegals. and in fact when you punch in the work site enforcement on the web site it looks like record enforcement numbers, since late 2008. fox news has done digging on this and it turns out the administration's numbers only tell half the story. according to to reporting done by william lajeunesse, william, what do the new numbers reveal about the administration's immigration policy? >> reporter: well, martha, it tells us that president obama has basically turned the car around, kiddiconsidering when hk
the keys over from president bush, people worked illegally here, with no fear of being deported and then, president bush had high profile raids and those are the numbers you saw on the ice web site and what ice is not telling you and doesn't want to necessarily share is under president obama, those numbers have gone down by 89%. >> you have to target employers. but, when i was at ice we thought we could not ignore the aliens we encountered... >> reporter: from factory to farm, immigration agents under president bush raided hundreds of businesses, while arresting and deporting thousands of illegal immigrants. some as criminals, but, in 2008, 5184 were deported for simply being here illegally. now, look at the numbers, plummet under president obama. in both categories. this fiscal year, ice arrested just 600 workers for being here illegally, nearly 90% fewer than just two years ago. >> it is tough when you have law enforcement turning a blind eye
to categories of aliens and that is what is happening here, de facto amnesty. >> rather than high-profile raids that crack down on workers, and let employers off the hook, this administration decided to focus on criminals. >> reporter: employer audits are up 50%, and fines, tripled to almost 3 million but look at the number of executives arrested. down by half and critics say it makes no sense to allow illegal employees known to use fake or stolen identification to walk away. >> when ice is not following up on those aliens, you have a situation where those aliens can be going down the street to get another job. >> the vast majority of the workforce has not committed any crime. >> reporter: martha, there is supposed to be a full screen that showed you -- i have no idea why it didn't come up, under president bush you had 5100 deportations as a result of work site arrest and that is now
down to 600, under president obama. just a sharp, sharp decline, and that is what those figures actually show you. there is actually two more years of fiscal '09 and, 10 where there is a sharp decline and the web site only shows you the huge increase. but, basically, it is a difference in approach and those raids were controversial and, under president obama they are simply citing the employers, but are allowing the workers, the employees, to go down the road and get another job. back to you. martha: interesting reporting, william lajeunesse, thank you very much. good story. good to have you. gregg: the second wave of monsoon floods surging through pakistan now, the quickly rising waters forcing more than 350,000 people from their homes. we're three weeks into the disaster and floods are now responsible for killing 1500 pakistanis. and, displacing 20 million more. foreign aid groups are worried about emerging health crises and the united nations and others
are treating over 1.5 million people for a range of diseases. and, severe flooding also hammering northern china, the river rising to the highest level in a decade. you can see, there are hundreds of thousands of chinese evacuating the cities and towns along the border with north korea. one entire family died when floodwaters swept their home away, the latest disaster in one of china's worst flood seasons on resources. martha: a new mega center for gulf catastrophe claims opens for begin today, victims looking for money from bp filed into the new facility starting today, ken feinberg is the claims administrator, in charge of distributing the $20 billion fund, and, anybody who receives the settlement, in the, gives up their right to sue, bp's oil company, feinberg says that that clause was his idea, not bp's and he insists that years of court battles are not in
anyone's best interest and he ran the compensation fund, after 9/11 and there was a similar rule in that fund. gregg: rod blagojevich not shying away from the media spotlight, even though he could be facing a retrial in his corruption case. his bizarre new pr blitz, and, all of the latest from planet blago... next. martha: and the obama administration's cash for clunkers program hitting' major snag, why government auditors say tens of millions in rebates may be ineligible. gregg: plus democrats going on the offensive ahead of the midterm elections, taking an old page from party play book, it is called, blame bush, will it work with angry voters and a sagging economy? >> we hold big business accou accountable or go back to the same policies that got us into this mess. our choice is clear... thanks.
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gregg: welcome back, democrats launching an ad campaign in t run-up to the elections, the dnc dusting off an old theme, called "blame bush" or "bashing bush" and will it work with an angry electorate and a sputtering economy? take a listen: >> america faces a big choice, do we continue to move forward like democrats are doing? investing in education, for every child, manufacturing right here at home? clean energy, pouring a nwering economy and do we hold big business accountable when they've gone too far or do we go back to the same republican policies that got us into the mess. this fall, our choice is clear. the democratic national committee is responsible for the content of this advertising. gregg: joining me is the deputy
editor of "roll call" aerin billings, the president obama stump speech, repeatedly blames his predecessor for all of our woes. and given though fact that it has been almost two years since president obama was elected, is that an effective strategy, or, is it so tired that it is counterproductive? >> well, frankly, it may be the only strategy that democrats have this cycle. i mean, it sounds a lot like 2008, as we all know, but, i mean, democrats are not running on health care reform, they cannot run on having turned the economy around because it has not turned around yet and they have to present themselves as an alternative to the republicans, so what do they do? they they are trying to remind them, because they elected them in the first place because they didn't like george w. bush. they may not have a lot in the arsenal to throw out at this point. gregg: point well taken and
another point was made in an op-ed in be "washington post" by steven stromberg: the bush defense is getting less effective, around 2008, anger at bush was so deep and widespread his mere mention would short circuit unpleasant conversations that now, rightly or wrongly, most have moved on and it only works on liberals. but, you know what, erin maybe that is the point, maybe the "blame bush" strategy will excite the liberal base to get out the vote in the midterm which democrats desperately need and maybe that is the real strategy. >> is that the strategy? and if it plays out, it doesn't hurt democrats and obviously they need people to go to the polls and the get out the vote effort is... they have stiff head winds before them, but, you know, as we know democrats have been in charge of the congress four years and obama now, two, and it is hard to argue that they are not responsible or are
not in charge because they are. gregg: yes. >> having said that, getting back to the -- out the vote, if it brings those liberals to the polls, it doesn't hurt them. gregg: president obama promised when he was first elected, pass my 800-plus stimulus package and unemployment will never go above 8% and it is 9.5%, and so, clearly, he overpromised on that and most of the polls, almost all of them, when you look at them, say most americans think the stimulus plan failed. so, to blame somebody else for his own broken promise, does it ring of insincerity, and if not, desperation. >> i don't know if i would go that far. certainly i would say that the democrats are looking for how to play the election, and, you know, as they've said, the last, at least year the economy, the recession, downturn, was worse than we anticipated. you know, the beauty is in the eye of the be holder as you know. but, look, they are trying their best to figure out a way to try
to stave off or stem the losses come november 2nd, because, look, it's not everybody acknowledges it will not be great for democrats and they'll lose seats and the question is, do they lose the majority in the house and senate and they are doing everything they can to avoid that. gregg: it dent woidn't work in massachusetts where democrats aired ads calling scott brown a clone and in the end, he won, erin billings, deputy editor of "roll call, thank you". >> thanks, gregg. martha: wildfires ranging in the golden state, how firefighters are getting a handle on it but why nearby residents are not exactly out of the woods yet. gregg: five years since one of the worst natural disasters in american history. today, hurricane katrina like you have never seen it before. the man behind the brand new epic documentary, just ahead. >>... i'm never going to see any of this any more. i don't know what is going to happen, man.
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martha: focusing on the races going on around the country, and there is a red-hot senate race, in the coldest state in the country, alaska, a critical contest shaping up there, as the battle for control of congress intensified. we have incumbent republican lisa murkowski taking on joe milter in what is becoming a heated primary and, she's tolding quite a hefty lead, right now, listen to this: >> the president tried to pass cap-and-trade and lisa had the courage to stand up to him, because she knew how devastating it would be for a loss of jobs. >> and, the economy in the state
of alaska, she does this on a daily basis. >> economy and jobs and we need to protected her seniority in the u.s. senate. martha: this is one of her ads, she's running there, the incumbent senator and we asked her to join us as well and hope she'll do that in the coming days an joe miller is challenging her for the republican nomination, endorsed by sarah palin and former arkansas governor mike health care buy who are both fox news contributors, joe miller, welcome, good to have you here today. >> great to be here, good morning. martha: good morning to you. the polls look like they are leaning strongly towards less sa murkowski, and within i lookone this morning had her at 62% and you at 32% and those are pretty big odds to overcome. >> that is an old number and you have to realize, that the polls in alaska are notoriously inaccurate. in fact, governor pasarah palin race, in '06 they were off almost 40 points and it is red-hot on the ground and we are
closing the gap rapidly. martha: i saw a letter todd palin wrote on your behalf and the tea party raised money for you and just to give people, information on your background, a graduate of west point and bronze star recipient in the gulf war, constitutional scholar, lawyer, judge, an impressive resume but not experience serving people on capitol hill or anything along those lines, how do you think that your background will help you beat lisa murkowski? >> well, i think it is precisely that kind of background, washington, d.c. needs and frankly the reason we have the problems we have right now is because of the crisis of leadership in d.c. and, the institutional incumbency, the results of people in d.c. not doing what is this people's interest but, basically expanding government at every turn and alaskans, like americans throughout the country, are sick and tired of that direction. and they want new faces, and want to change out the process in d.c., and so that we can get back to what we see as being the
proper role, constitutional role of government. martha: she has said that you are attempting to portray here as not a true conservative, and, she says that she is and among the things that she thinks she'd do is to repeal health care, and, to question the constitutionality, to begin with, of mandating people to buy health care insurance, where do you stand on that? >> well, i absolutely wants to repeal it. i think it is important to note that she is portraying herself in a different light from what her record reflects and on obama care, for example, she flip-flopped considerably and march 30 of this year she said she didn't want to repeal it and i heard your clip, for recent advertisement about cap-and-trade and she in '07 co-sponsored a cap-and-trade bill and is disingenuous for her to say she stood up against obama especially with -- if you look at her record, of any republican senator running for re-election, this year, she has the most liberal, most democratically voting record of any of them. and, she's really, i think, has
been coopted by obama, and the standing out, does not match her record at all. martha: we'll see what happens, joe miller, thank you very much, sir, good to have you with us and we hope lisa murkowski will come on and tell her side of the story and we'll watch a lot of midterm races as we get closer. thanks for being with us today. >> thank you, enjoyed it. gregg: rod blagojevich. like you have never heard him before. blog go's world. -- blago's world, the fallout from the media tour and why he had to go to that comic-con, whether he's done with political office, and any second acts? >> you don't rule out a political come back, and you compared yourself to winston churchill. you can't be serious. >> comparing myself to winston churchill, no. you are right. i'm not serious. i don't smoke cigars or scotch and i think i can run faster than him but if you are asking do i believe there is a potential political come back in the future, when i'm vindicated
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martha: developing now, less than half an hour away from an update from the vice president, joe biden set to speak live from indianapolis at the top of the hour and he this is president's points man on military operations, in iraq and he's expected to predict an end to the political problems there, and we'll be watching for that at the top of the hour and a weekend full of protests in lower manhattan, opponents and supporters of a mosque near
ground zero clash near the world trade center site, critics saying it does not belong there. and, backers saying opposition is rooted in bigotry. and tropical storm danielle gaining strength, winds topping 60 miles an hour that's storm heads for the caribbean. gregg: former illinois governor rod blagojevich appearing in an exclusive fox news sunday interview yesterday, addressing his felony conviction and his bold strategy for his upcoming retrial. take a listen: >> now, i'm ready for round two. in the second round, we're going to put a defense on, i'm certain and in that particular case, you know, we'll call witnesses like rahm emanuel, senator harry reid, senator menendez, senator jackson and costello and a host of leading democrats who were involved in this process. gregg: he said he would call president obama and good luck
with that, joining us, former prosecutor todd kenneth and any lawyer will tell you when you open your cross-examination with the defendant on the witness stand, you want to open with a bang, because, jurors will always remember that, and it is kind of true, in television news. with the big interview. so, here is chris wallace, yesterday, his opening question. take a listen. >> governor you were supposed to come to washington here today and instead attended a convention in chicago called comic-con and posed with superheros and charged $50 for an autograph and $80 for a photo. is there anything you will not do for a buck, these days. >> is there anything you will not do for a buck these days which underscores the criminal case against blago trying to make money off of his office. >> i don't know if a-rod gets $50, and now, blago gets $50! gregg: we saw one of the reasons why his attorneys didn't want
him to testify, it was a withering cross-examination by a nonlawyer, which is chris wallace, in which blago's explanations for his alleged crimes at times sounded vacuous and, he at times appeared unhinged. is that one of the reasons why they tried to hide him from the jury. >> look, i think the defense team's strategy in this case and to some extent it may have worked and i don't think to the extent he represented it did, do a media blitz and get him on the apprentice and pre-at tv shows and flying with the picture of the globe behind him and that amounts to unsworn testimony, not, subject to cross-examination. testimony in a court of law, federal court, is much more constricted and also carries much more of the detriment for the defendant. gregg: blago en his interview with chris wallace said he wasn't corrupted, he was
horse-trading which is politics as usual and the problem is, it is corrupt if you stand to benefit personally from using the power of your office. >> of course. look at the united states code, section dealing with bribery, i mean, you don't even have to rife the benefit. it is enough to solicit a benefit, or to propose a benefit to someone else. you know, some of these charges are very complex and convoluted and the stuff law school blue back exams are made of and others aren't so complex which makes blago's current strategy, waving his fist at the federal prosecutors a very precarious one. gregg: as we heard in the introduction, he said the second time around, not only will i take the witness stand -- and he said he would do that the first time, and he said i'll call rahm emanuel and harry reid and, other people including president obama and i have a feeling -- >> executive privilege or something. yeah, look, the reality is, gregg, retrials rarely go well for the defense, if, to know
other reason now the prosecution can learn from whatever mistake they feel they made in at the first trial and hit back harder the second time. gregg: but the defense lawyers as well -- everybody gets educated here. >> the defense learns as well. but, what did they learn in this case? do you really think after going through the first trial and watching the client's antics now the defense will be more pre-disposed to put him on the witness stand. gregg: people don't realize but prosecutors interview the jurors, after the fact. >> of course. gregg: and find out what this got and didn't got and then, they tailor-make their second case to account for that here and they convinced 11 of the 12 jurors that... >> they convinced 11 of the 12 jurors and had one outlier and there is no guarantee in fact, no reason to believe that blago will be lucky enough the second time around. and, keep in mind we are living in the period of the greatest anti-government fervor, at least since vietnam and watergate.
and blago represents the self-absorbed, sociopathic politicians. why in the age of tea party and ground zero mosque riots, near riots, that he is going to be so lucky to find another juror that will be sympathetic. gregg: quick question, i'm out of time, he promised again he'll take the witness stand. but he's now a convicted liar. that was the one count they convicted him of lying. now, that may be inadmissible evidence in the second trial, pending appellate review. but, the jurors will know it, aren't they. >> jurors will know about it under the federal rules of evidence, prior misconduct shouldn't be used to prove propensity -- gregg: prior convictions, though. >> under certain circumstances, can be admissible. keep in mind, what is probably more tangible and problem blemmatics, under the federal sentencing guidelines, failure to accept responsibility is a basis for increasing the sentence under the guidelines, if anybody watches them on "the today show" -- him on the today
show and the comic cavalcade, that is someone not accepting responsibility. gregg: and he couldn't identify batman and robin correctly. and i was embarrassed for him on that one. good to see you. martha: that was his biggest crime of all, right! gregg: come on! martha: i can take all the other stuff, but not that. thanks, you guys, the blagojevich controversy started because the former governor was accused of trying to sell the president's old senate seat in illinois, remember that? and now the battle over the seat is one of the closest and nastiest campaigns going on now in this country, republican mark kirk, taking on the democrat ain't went negative, fast, forecasts and why is the race, steve, so consistently ugly? >> because it started out that way when snow was on the ground, before the primary, and both sides, both candidates, even when talking about other things, weave in the negative narrative
they built up for their opponents, and mark kirk is tapped as a liar for inconsistent stories he has told about his military background and his teaching career and about a rescue on lake michigan as a youth. and he is hurted by all of this, most definitely and, the democrat hurt by the family bank and the kirk campaign initially red flagged the bank as the problem and then talked about how he was a failed banker and then a mob banker with connections to organized crime figures and now, last week, talking to a democratic group, even was talking about the negative stuff when he wasn't talking about it. have a listen. >> i'm not going to spend a lot of time talking about the fact that he has lied about his military career or talk about the fact that he lied about a teaching career or the fact that he lied about a drowning incident because i don't want to waste your time... >> reporter: then again, took 13 seconds to make sure those things were out in front of a democratic audience and that is the type of behavior we are seeing on the campaign quite a bit here in illinois. martha: and i'm assuming kirk
does the same thing. >> of course he does and he was asked a question, in a recent event last week, about charges from the democrat that he wanted to take the country back to the tax and fiscal budgeting policies of the bush administration and listen to how kirk answers that question: >> i think i'd like to take them back to governor edgar, and, senator dirksen's days when we were moderate, we were fiscal conservatives, when we didn't lend money to mobsters. >> reporter: like the candidates can't help each other, when a talk of a subject in front of a camera, a reporter, a group of supporters they invariably ends up on the narrative, how the other guy is so much worse than they are. martha: people are so tired on both sides and we'll see what happens when the polls hope, steve brown, thank you very much. >> you're welcome. martha: look, folks, an alligator, not in florida, it is
in chicago, in the chicago river, said to be a three to five-foot-long alligator. a chicago woman and her family spotted this little friend basking in the sun while they boat on the north branch of the river, we're told and they say the gator was watching ducks swimming by, just hanging out and they say, not long ago, a two-foot alligator and this is a 3 to 5 foot alligator, and the first one they assumed was a pet, somebody let go, and this one, we're not really sure where it came from. and, it is sort of lurking along the water there and the family who saw it called the police, and, they say one of the officers saw the alligator, confirmed it was there and, the little guy, is not so little and slipped away, before the animal control officers could arrive, so, if you plan on boating in the chicago river any time soon you should be aware there is an alligator, swimming along there. gregg: i think i'll stay out of the water. okay. we're awaiting a major speech on iraq, from vice president joe biden. look, guys, we have our cameras
there, and this is a remote address by general david petraeus the audience is watching in annapolis and the question is, is the iraqi government in a position to stand up as the u.s. combat mission draws down? we'll follow that events, and... people on the ground during the hurricane katrina, telling their stories, five years hence. the producer of this riveting documentary will join us. >> every parts of me said to head north and evacuate and i decided to stay and witness things and document things and help people and see what happens.
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>> coming up on happening now, very important comments coming from the vice president, joe biden on iraq, afghanistan and
the way forward and we'll have those comments for you live. rick: and you heard about the violence in mexico between the drug gangs? now, stray bullets crossing the border, hitting a major campus in texas. we'll tell you what is going on there. >> also, full moon tomorrow night and did you know though moon is shrinking? we'll have scientists onto talk about that. >> see you at the top of the hour. martha: we'll see them in a moment and first, never before seen real-time looks at the devastation of hurricane katrina. nearly five years after the destruction of new orleans and the gulf coast, the story of this catastrophic storm and flood is told by eye witnesses, before it started. the people who stayed. listen. >> i can't go outside any more to take video. but, if you can see out there, it is leak we're in the middle of a river. we are totally surrounded by water.
we have lost everything. no, it's almost... i'm just video recording it for a second. observing god. -- oh, god. oh, god, please, let it stop. martha: incredibly powerful piece of documentary here, greg jacobs is the executive producer of the national geographic channel's "witness katrina", welcome and good to have you here. you also did a similar piece, i should point out, 102 minutes that changed the world which i thought was one of the most extraordinary witness accounts of what happened during 9/11. so, thank you for being here today. >> thank you so much for having me. martha: talk to me about, how you approached this project. and, when you started going down to new orleans, and, asking
people, do you have video? were you here before it happened and how they responded to that? >> well, one of the things we found consistently, was people really, really wanted to share their stories. i think there is a sense down there among at least the people we talked to, that maybe the country had forgotten about them, at least misunderstood the story as they understood it and once we started asking them for their footage they were enthusiastic in wanting to respond. martha: and these pictures are incredible. and these are all videos, the folks who were living there took and people who decided to stay and i feel you see so many images of what happened afterwards, but to watch it coming in this way, is extraordinary. what was your reaction, you know, what stood out to you and what pieces of video and what moments, when you started une unearthing this. >> what people forget about this, we didn't see the storm as it was happening and it makes it different from 9/11 show. we woke up to find out that new orleans dodged the bullet, and i
think one of the great things and powerful things about the show, is if you lived through the storm with people from the inside of their homes, and, that may be something that, you know, people have never gotten a chance to experience before, so, it is incredibly, incredibly powerful thing. martha: as we remember it happened, really, in two sort of waves, you had the storm and then you had the flooding, and what happened in the wards and the 9th district, how does your documentary take us through those two pieces of this, which was so significant to the story? >> right. i think, the first hour is really living through the storm and what you see is this... almost describe it as a horror movie where people think they are having an adventure, maybe camping or something and things happen and get spooky and all of a sudden, things become terrifying and that is what the first hour is like and the second hour, you really focus on new orleans, and you see just
how difficult it was to endure the experiences that people were having down there. and, yet, the grace and the humor and, in some cases, you know, the incredible heroism of people, just to suffer through what they suffered. martha: and you guys had a unique opportunity to let these people tell their own story and that was so compelling about the 9/11 documentary you did as well. you have to stay out of the stay and let the voices tell the story, right. >> you make a good point. it is not a documentary about these people but from these people, and it makes them more willing to share their stories and we say people's stories are their most precious possession and when you pretty much literally lost everything, in some ways the story is all you have left. so, people need to know that you will handle it with respect, and i think letting the stories speak for themselves makes the point. martha: it appears that that is what you did and we look forward to seeing it and appreciate the
fact that you did the work and put it all together. so that people can witness this. because that is an art in and of itself. greg jacobs, good to talk to you today, look forward to seeing it, watch "national geographic" for the two hour presentation, five years after hurricane katrina, hard to believe, right, that it has been five years, it premiers tonight, 9:00 p.m. eastern and pacific time. gregg: incredible stuff. martha: gosh, i saw a lot of videos and it is extraordinary. gregg: all right, cash for crooks? that's what the government is now alleging. federal auditors say millions of dollars in cash for clunkers rebates may be ineligible. what is the crime? martha: and we're waiting now for vice president joe biden who will speak at the top of the hour and this is a significant moment because the administration, he's the administration's points man on the iraq war and will tell us what is next. for iraqis as the u.s. forces leave their country and how he thinks things will go there. we'll be there, coming up. [ male announcer ] this is america.
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martha: pretty surprising details today about the obama administration's cash for clunkers program. government auditors say up to 94 million dollars in rebates may go up in smoke, if you can believe that due to paperwork problems at 20 dealerships nationwide and all of it coming to lighted one year after the launch of the program, that spurred a car-buying frenzy in this country think feds say there is no evidence, though, of widespread fraud. gregg: there is an alarming new report on the plummeting value of foreclosed homes. this as housing industry analysts predict one million homes will be repossessed this year. molly line is live in boston
with more. hi, molly. >> reporter: hi, gregg. well, more than a half million homes have already fallen into foreclosure in the beginning of this year and now a study by mit and harvard researchers reveals the drop in value to a foreclosed property is more staggering than many would believe. >> $271,000. >> reporter: banks quick to give mortgages in the housing boom, now find themselves holding properties worth a fraction of what they once were worth, especially when a property is in foreclosure. >> in fact, the discount on average, is about 27%, which is a very large number. >> reporter: joe campbell chairs the economics department at harvard and co-authored the study which examines 1.8 million home sales in massachusetts from 1987 to 2009. another grim statistic. nearby homes within 250 feet of a foreclosure lose 1% of their value. homeowners who overextended and find themselves unable to sell in the worst real estate market in the generation, are finding themselves with few options.
take this two bedroom, condo off the main street in the seaside community of hyannis. purchased 3 years ago for $190,000, it is now bank-owned and the price hit rock bottom. >> within 30 days, we had four offers on a pricing of $52,000. you are nearly a 75% discount on this foreclosed property. >> reporter: trying to stop the tide of foreclosure, the obama administration paid out $1.5 billion of $50 billion set aside for mortgage modifications but 51% were extended to permanent modifications and in a sense, there are families that it works for and families it has not and it is a tough challenge to find which ones will work and which ones won't. gregg. gregg: sure is, molly line, thanks very much. martha. martha: a moment from now, the podium, awaiting vice president joe biden who will speak on the wars in iraq and afghanistan.
live in indianapolis, next.